The auction house Sotheby’s announced on Monday that it has reached an agreement to be acquired by BidFair USA, owned by art collector Patrick Drahi, in a transaction valued at 3,700 million dollars, the company said in a statement.
After the transaction Sotheby’s will stop trading after 31 years in the New York market, where the value of its securities soared by 57.64% almost one hour after the opening of the session.
“This acquisition will give Sotheby’s the opportunity to accelerate its successful program of growth initiatives in recent years in a more flexible private environment,” said CEO of the firm, Tad Smith.
The French-Israeli art collector Patrick Drahi, described by the Sotheby’s executive as “one of the best-regarded entrepreneurs in the world,” is the founder of the multinational telecommunications company Altice and owner of other companies such as Suddenlink, Cablevision or Cheddar.
The operation, which is subject to approval by the authorities and partners, is expected to close in the last quarter of this year and shareholders will receive $ 57 in cash for each title.
Drahi explained in a press release that she makes the investment thinking of her family, that she has “a very long-term perspective” and that she “fully” trusts the current managers of the auction house, so she does not anticipate any change in your strategy
Also, the businessman said that in the operation there is no “capital link” with Altice Europe or Altice USA and that it will continue to focus on its business, “leading the management team” of the first subsidiary, the European subsidiary, and as president of the second, the American.
For his part, the chairman of the Board of Directors of Sotheby’s, Domenico de Sole, said that this body “enthusiastically supports” Drahi’s offer.
The auction house, which has its headquarters in New York, registered in 2018 a turnover of 1,035 million dollars and a net profit of 108,6 million, according to its latest report delivered to the US authorities. (EFEUSA) .-